Mita Vashisht on her experience working for Zee Theatre’s ‘Agnipankh’

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Pouring life to this powerful character Durgeshwari alias Baisaab in the Zee Theatre’s teleplay Agnipankh, Mita Vashisht seems to carry the whole play with a sense of perfection. The actor talks to Hyderabad Today about the play which was written immediately post-independence but is still relevant in today’s world.

The play, written by Acclaimed Marathi playwright Prabhakar Laxman Mayekar in 1948, revolves around Durgeshwari Devi, popularly called Baisaab, who had to take up the charge as an administrator of not only the household but also the zamindari and the entire business empire of the family due to the incapability and dis-interest of her husband Raosaab.

“Baisaab is a woman who clearly speaks her mind on what she believes in. The strength of the character is phenomenally written. She is a mother, a zamindari, a wife to an escapist husband and a boss to the workers. There are many shades in just this one character,” shares Mita. On getting into the world of Baisaab, Mita adds, “I’m not someone who has ever been a head of a conglomerate of mills and union workers which Baisaab is; I’m not a wife of a wavered husband or a mother of two kids. So to enter the world of Baisaab, you have to get rid of your own ego.

You have to completely enter her world by actually entering her thought processes and her style of speech.” “When I took the character I first worked hard on mastering the dialogues. How would she say something? Would she rush through her lines? Would she pace them out a certain way? The certain tone that she might have.

Also, the play is based in a Marathi background, so there are a few Marathi mixed phrases which a purely Hindi speaking person won’t use. So the whole ticklishness of going through that terrain of how she would speak to different people and that starts revealing many things to the viewers,” she adds.

Even after 70 odd years, the value system changing in terms of a man-woman relationship and how people conduct themselves, the play still falls relevant to today’s day. “It is a journey of a bold woman who holds the estate and family together which I think it an all-time relevant play when the human endeavour is concerned, Mita concludes. Agnipankh will be telecast throughout this month and will also be available on Zee5.


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